In this activity, students explore heat transfer and temperature by considering the design of hot and cold packs used to treat minor injuries. In the virtual lab, students evaluate substances by comparing their change in temperature when added to water. Students investigate kinetic energy at the molecular level and connect heat transfer to transfer of kinetic energy between systems. Throughout, students learn that endothermic and exothermic reactions are linked to the design of hot and cold packs.
The research reported here was supported by the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, through Grants R305A100069 and R305A170049 to WestEd. The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not represent views of the Institute or the U.S. Department of Education.